Veganary is impossible if you can’t cook

31 days of hell


The concept of going vegan for the month along with 22,513 conrads, according to the Veganary Facebook page, seemed like too much self-inflicted suffering.

As someone who has put a tin of beans in the microwave before due to lack of cooking knowledge and common sense, I thought it would be a good idea to mix it up in the kitchen.

I also thought by not eating any animal products and due to the fact salads involve no actual cooking, I’d lose weight and have more free time, despite only having 10 contact hours anyway.

Faith in happier times

Faith in happier times

Day one and I’m confused by what to eat and why there isn’t a ‘u’ in Veganary. So far I’ve had an orange and a bowl of rice with a fusion of regular chopped onions and no seasoning or sauce.

100 per cent vegan, 100 per cent no effort, 100 per cent sickening. I buy a ready-made up stir fry mix from Tesco’s that assures me it’s vegan. Tastes nice and ready in 2 minutes, what more could a lazy vegan want?

11 days in and 11 friends less Veganary was no longer funny or interesting. Friends hate it when you decide to turn Vegan.

Saying you’re not eating animal products for health, money and ethical issues only produces so many raised eyebrows before they tell you to do one.

Although, justifying this statement with it’s only for a month seems to cool this situation slightly, at least when applied to the former statement. The absolute disgust on their faces when we go to Spoons and I order the only vegan meal on the menu or ask for no mayo, or inquire about the chance of soy milk, is quite ridiculous.

What is a vegetable? I just don't know what to do with these

What is a vegetable? I just don’t know what to do with these

17 days in and it seems that vegans don’t do hangover food. But fucking hell vegans do hangovers. Drinking two bottles of wine (had to check the wine was vegan as some wines have egg in, rank yes) on a stomach that’s been lined solely with a bowl of plain rice and half a banana is not pleasant.

I’ll tell you what else isn’t pleasant, sitting in the chicken shop at 4am watching your mates stuff a junior special into and around their faces.

I know somewhere in a green field a little chicken is scooting about over joyed she’s not been deep-fried, covered in salt and consumed by some smashed student oblivious of any of her suffering. But really all I want is chicken.

Covered in mayonnaise and devoured in a pit of self-indulgence, absent from any part-tine vegan guilt. I’d even take a wing. So I go home eat a banana and cry.

22 days in and I’ve had plain baked potato and beans every night since chicken-gate.

Of course there are all kinds of substitutes for meat and dairy out there but I thought if I’m going to become a vegan I’m going to do it properly; by properly I mean border line starve myself due to being too lazy to actually look up any real vegan recipes.

Every night for a week. EVERY NIGHT.

Every night for a week. EVERY NIGHT.

Apparently my commitment to Veganary had been described by a friend of a friend as – and I quote – inspirational. I’d always thought you needed to attempt to cue world hunger or run a marathons back to back to become inspirational. Apparently all you need to do to become an inspiration is avoid cheese and live off hummus for a month.

Day 26 I am now an expert in the range of poos that the human body can produce. You name it, I’ve experienced it in the last month: all colours, shapes and sizes. If the Dulux paint chart had a ‘tick off if your poo has ever been this colour’ section, then I would have completed the whole fucking book.

My personal favourite arrived 20 days in and resembled a small curled up sleeping animal and luminous, and I mean fucking luminous, orange. If you’ve ever thought, hey I need to spice up my excrement life, then vegan is for you.

Ready meals are the one

Ready meals are the one

Day 29 and I finally discover pasta, unless the version with egg in, is vegan. I cook up a full bag of pasta and eat it plain with no regrets other than the fact I didn’t research veganary one little bit before committing to all 31 days.

February first arrives and I’m like a four-year-old at Christmas.

Going vegan for a month if you’re an experimental cook, or a cook at all, must be an exciting challenge. For me the only challenges were to not drunkenly eat a kebab, not to lose all my mates and survive a plethora of bowel movements.